My Favorite Quotes From Insanely Simple: The Obsession That Drives Apple’s Success

Book by Ken Segall

Gustavs Cirulis
Jan 13, 2014 · 3 min read

“People think focus means saying yes to the thing you've got to focus on. But that's not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully. I'm actually as proud of the things we haven't done as the things we have done. Innovation is saying no to a thousand things.”

“The reality is that providing too many choices is a quick way to drive people to confusion.”

“He [Steve Jobs] wasn't a big fan of wizzy animations. He believed that such things were “lazy”, the mark of a company trying to wow visitors with eye candy rather than substance.”

“It drove Steve batty to see in twenty slides what could be spoken in three sentences. He valued time way too much for that. He preferred straight talk and raw content to a slick presentation. In fact, a slick presentation would only make him suspect that you were fluffing up the few facts you really had.”

Many people incorrectly assume that by increasing the word count they will demonstrate their smarts, when the opposite is almost always closer to reality.

“When you first start off trying to solve a problem, the first solutions you come up with are very complex, and most people stop there. But if you keep going , and live with the problem and peel more layers of the onion off, you can sometimes arrive at some very elegant and simple solutions.”

“Be mindful of the fact that every time you attempt to communicate more than one thing, you're splitting the attention of those you're talking to — weather they're customers or colleagues. If it's necessary to deliver multiple messages, find a common theme that unites them all and push hard on the idea. You want people to remember what you say — and the more you cram into your communication, the more difficult you make it for them.”

“Though many writers never seem to grasp the point, using intelligent words does not necessary make you appear smarter. The best way to make yourself or your company look smart is to express an idea simply and with perfect clarity. No matter who your audience is, it's more effective to communicate as people do naturally. In simple sentences. Using simple words. Simplicity is its own form of cleverness — saying a great deal by saying little.”

“Don't allow the discouragement of others to force compromise upon your ideas. Push. If you can't get satisfaction with one person or vendor, move to another. If there was one area in which Steve Jobs had a well-deserved reputation for being impossible, this was it. He was relentless about executing ideas and demanding the people perform.”

“Simple can be harder than complex. You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it's worth it in the end, because once you get there, you can move mountains.”

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